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Mark McKnight Biography

Mark McKnight’s black and white photographs depict the human figure and the landscape with congruence. Often rendering the bodies of queer friends and lovers, McKnight carefully depicts the effects of entropy on the human form and pairs it with similar scares found on architecture, urban spaces, and the landscape. Situated between documentary and the surreal, McKnight’s photographs imply an erotic, yet brutal psychological space, informed by his personal relationships.

McKnight’s work has been exhibited and published throughout the United States and in Europe. He is the recipient of the 2019 Aperture Portfolio Prize and a 2020 Rema Hort Mann Emerging Artist Grant.

Recent solo exhibitions include the Aperture Foundation, New York; Klaus von Nichtssagend, NY; QUEENS, Los Angeles; the Riverside Art Museum, Riverside, CA; and Strongroom, Los Angeles. Recent group exhibitions include Park View, Los Angeles; BBQLA, Los Angeles; Human Resources, Los Angeles; Arturo Bandini, Los Angeles; OPEN HOUSE, Los Angeles; The Pit, Glendale; M+B, Los Angeles; Christophe Guye, Zurich; Charlie James Gallery, Los Angeles; Riverside Art Museum; Roberts & Tilton, Los Angeles; and the San Francisco Arts Commission; and the New York Photo Festival, among others.

McKnight’s work has been written about in Aperture, Art in America, Photograph Magazine, Contemporary Art Writing Daily and was recently discussed on The Magic Hour: Conversations on Photography. His photographs have been included in several catalogs of photography including 20/20 Vision: An International Photography Biennial and Defining Photographs & Radical Experiments in Inland Southern California, 1950 – Present (California Museum of Photography, Riverside, 2019).

In 2009, Mark traveled to Finland on a Fulbright Scholarship. Recent residencies include Light Work and Storm King Art Center. His first monograph Heaven is a Prison, will be published by Loose Joints (London/Marseilles) in Fall 2020 along with a solo presentation at Park View / Paul Soto, Los Angeles. McKnight earned his BFA at the San Francisco Art Institute in 2007, and his MFA at UC Riverside in 2015.

Past Exhibition

Close to Home

Erica Deeman, Mark McKnight, Eva O'Leary, and Larry Sultan

Opening Reception March 2, 6-9pm

Shulamit Nazarian is proud to present, Close to Home,a group exhibition of four photographers that mine their personal experiences–past and present–to express moments of intimacy within larger social and political structures. Engaging with the deep and complicated history of photographic portraiture, each artist renders his or her subjects in part as extensions of themselves, coded with personal and cultural references.